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McKinzie Wellness Center

Dr. Lonny McKinzie

There is much concern and confusion about the Flu, its variations and what is the best way to combat getting it and/or getting rid of it. I have combined what I’ve found from the CDC (Traditional Medicine) and a Holistic view point. Everyone should err on the side of caution and take every measure you feel is appropriate for you and your family. I personally believe if our bodies are properly taken care of by staying adjusted(stimulating the immune system), eating or supplementing with whole food nutrition, getting plenty or rest, and adopting good hygienic procedures, we can naturally prevent or fight off the various types of Influenza.

Listed below is an excerpt from the CDC with added comments. My recommendations are at the end.

Key Facts about Swine Influenza (Swine Flu)-click here for more information


What is Swine Influenza?
Swine Influenza (swine flu) is a respiratory disease of pigs caused by type A influenza virus that regularly causes outbreaks of influenza in pigs. Swine flu viruses cause high levels of illness and low death rates in pigs. Swine influenza viruses may circulate among swine throughout the year, but most outbreaks occur during the late fall and winter months similar to outbreaks in humans. The classical swine flu virus (an influenza type A H1N1 virus) was first isolated from a pig in 1930.

How many swine flu viruses are there?
Like all influenza viruses, swine flu viruses change constantly. Pigs can be infected by avian influenza and human influenza viruses as well as swine influenza viruses. When influenza viruses from different species infect pigs, the viruses mutate (i.e. swap genes) and new viruses that are a mix of swine, human and/or avian influenza viruses can emerge. However, most of the recently isolated influenza viruses from pigs have been H1N1 viruses.

Can humans catch swine flu?
Swine flu viruses do not normally infect humans. However, sporadic human infections with swine flu have occurred. Most commonly, these cases occur in persons with direct exposure to pigs (e.g. children near pigs at a fair or workers in the swine industry). An outbreak of apparent swine flu infection in pigs in Wisconsin in 1988 resulted in multiple human infections, and, although no community outbreak resulted, there was antibody evidence of virus transmission from the patient to health care workers who had close contact with the patient. (This is normal and usually causes no illness when the immune system is functioning optimally).

How common is swine flu infection in humans?
In the past, CDC received reports of approximately one human swine influenza virus infection every one to two years in the U.S., but with this recent outbreak more cases are being reported. To find the latest statistics go to:

http://www.cdc.gov/h1n1flu/update.htm#totalcases

What are the symptoms of swine flu in humans?
The symptoms of swine flu in people are expected to be similar to the symptoms of regular human seasonal influenza and include fever, lethargy, lack of appetite and coughing. Some people with swine flu also have reported runny nose, sore throat, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. (Symptoms are the body’s natural defense mechanisms at work, preventing the body from performing these defenses results in lingering illness and abnormal healing. However, anytime a defense mechanism goes to excess, i.e. vomiting or diarrhea can cause dehydration, is cause for alarm and appropriate care needs to be administered.)

Can people catch swine flu from eating pork?
No. Swine influenza viruses are not transmitted by food. Eating properly handled and cooked pork and pork products are safe. Cooking pork to an internal temperature of 160°F kills the swine flu virus as it does other bacteria and viruses.

How does swine flu spread?
Influenza viruses can be directly transmitted from pigs to people and from people to pigs. Human infection with flu viruses from pigs are most likely to occur when people are in close proximity to infected pigs, such as in pig barns and livestock exhibits housing pigs at fairs. Human-to-human transmission of swine flu can also occur. This is thought to occur in the same way as seasonal flu occurs in people, which is mainly person-to-person transmission through coughing or sneezing of people infected with the influenza virus. People may become infected by touching something with flu viruses on it and then touching their mouth or nose. (This reinforces the need to practice good hygiene.)

What do we know about human-to-human spread of swine flu?
In September 1988, a previously healthy 32-year-old pregnant woman was hospitalized for pneumonia and died 8 days later. A swine H1N1 flu virus was detected. Four days before getting sick, the patient visited a county fair swine exhibition where there was widespread influenza-like illness among the swine. In follow-up studies, 76% of swine exhibitors tested had antibody evidence of swine flu infection but no serious illnesses were detected among this group. Additional studies suggest that one to three health care personnel who had contact with the patient developed mild influenza-like illnesses with antibody evidence of swine flu infection. (This is a perfect example of why everyone exposed doesn’t get sick, their immune systems where strong enough to fight off the virus.)

How can human infections with swine influenza be diagnosed?
To diagnose swine influenza A infection, a respiratory specimen would generally need to be collected within the first 4 to 5 days of illness (when an infected person is most likely to be shedding virus). However, some persons, especially children, may shed virus for 10 days or longer. Identification as a swine flu influenza A virus requires sending the specimen to CDC for laboratory testing.

What medications are available to treat swine flu infections in humans?
There are four different antiviral drugs that are licensed for use in the US for the treatment of influenza: amantadine, rimantadine, oseltamivir and zanamivir. While most swine influenza viruses have been susceptible to all four drugs, the most recent seven swine influenza viruses isolated from humans are resistant to amantadine and rimantadine. At this time, CDC recommends the use of oseltamivir or zanamivir for the treatment and/or prevention of infection with swine influenza viruses. More information on treatment recommendations can be found at www.cdc.gov/flu/swine/recommendations.htm. (These antiviral drugs do not guarantee prevention or successful treatment of the virus. They are strain specific and viruses mutate at an alarming rate. Our bodies however, are intelligent enough to successfully combat viruses if our immune systems are functioning properly.)

What other examples of swine flu outbreaks are there?
Probably the most well known is an outbreak of swine flu among soldiers in
Fort Dix, New Jersey in 1976. The virus caused disease with x-ray evidence of pneumonia in at least 4 soldiers and 1 death; all of these patients had previously been healthy. The virus was transmitted to close contacts in a basic training environment, with limited transmission outside the basic training group. The virus is thought to have circulated for a month and disappeared. The source of the virus, the exact time of its introduction into Fort Dix, and factors limiting its spread and duration are unknown. The Fort Dix outbreak may have been caused by introduction of an animal virus into a stressed (weakened immune system) human population in close contact in crowded facilities during the winter. The swine influenza A virus collected from a Fort Dix soldier was named A/New Jersey/76 (Hsw1N1).

Is the H1N1 swine flu virus the same as human H1N1 viruses?
No. The H1N1 swine flu viruses are antigenically very different from human H1N1 viruses and, therefore, vaccines for human seasonal flu would not provide protection from H1N1 swine flu viruses.

Swine Flu in Pigs

How does swine flu spread among pigs?
Swine flu viruses are thought to be spread mostly through close contact among pigs and possibly from contaminated objects moving between infected and uninfected pigs. Herds with continuous swine flu infections and herds that are vaccinated against swine flu may have sporadic disease, or may show only mild or no symptoms of infection.

Our recommendations to reduce your risk of being exposed or contracting the flu are to:

  1. Practice good hygiene by:
    • Washing your hands frequently, especially prior to eating, after being around others, after using the toilet, after sneezing, coughing or blowing your nose or handling money.
    • Direct your cough or sneeze preferably into your sleeve to cover your nose and mouth, not your into your hand, unless you have a tissue or handkerchief.
    • Wash your clothes after know exposure.
    • Use paper towel to turn off facets, open doors or flush toilets.
    • Be aware of other potentially contaminated surfaces like, elevator buttons, counter tops, arm rests, stair rails, public transportation hand rails and supports, backs of chairs, pews or benches.
  2. Stay at home or away from others if you have symptoms of the flu.
  3. Stimulate your own immune system with regular chiropractic adjustments.
  4. Eat a balanced diet of fresh fruits and vegetables and supplement your diet with whole food supplements known to boost the immune system.
  5. Get plenty of rest and de-stress with exercise and relaxing activities.
  6. Vaccine information can be found at: National Vaccine Information Center
  7. For more information contact our office:

903-531-2243

or email: mail@DrMcKinzie.com